Money raised for Wrexham toddler

Reporter:

Claire Gallagher

THOUSANDS of pounds have been raised to buy specialist equipment for a toddler who has severe cerebral palsy.

Elin Haf Drake, aged two, suffered a lack of oxygen during her birth which left her brain damaged and with severe cerebral palsy and intractable epilepsy.

Elin, of Rhos-y-Madoc, Ruabon, was left unable to walk or talk, is visually impaired and has between two and three fits a week.

£3,500 has been raised by family friend David Trollope who cycled across the Great Divide – the 3,000 mile route from Canada to Mexico – to raise money for Elin.

Speaking about the challenge, which he completed in 45 days, mum Ruth Drake said: “In height, during the ascent and descent of the Rocky’s, he climbed the equivalent of five times the height of Mount Everest – more than 200,000 feet.

“Thankfully he did not meet any bears and even managed to receive some packages at post offices along the way, including chocolate and some newspaper cuttings, including the one from the Leader, about his challenge, to spur him on.”

Ruth said the kindness from the donations had been overwhelming.

Local community groups the Cefn Mawr Musical Society and the Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir donated more than £200 each.

Ruth added: “We also received donations from as far as America, from people David had met on the way and even some generous celebrity donations, from actress Liza Goddard and the internationally famous playwright, Alan Ayckbourne, who was directing a play starring David’s actress girlfriend, Laura Doddington, at the time of the cycle. We would like to take the opportunity to thank all contributors.”

David will be giving a talk in London in November, complete with a slideshow, of his adventure.

All those who donated are welcome to attend and Elin is hoping to be there.

Ruth, who teaches part time at Ysgol Deiniol, Marchwiel, said previously: “It’s incredibly humbling for us as parents that he would choose to dedicate such a great challenge to Elin.

“The sensory equipment is incredibly important because we are so limited when she doesn’t move independently. You can’t just put her in front of the television, she needs specialist equipment to stimulate her.

“Having Elin has completely changed our lives, she makes you realise what’s important in life.”

See full story in the Leader

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